Some things never change. I remember the first time I fell “in like” with a boy. Falling in like is sort of like the training wheels to falling in love. Most people fall in like before they fall in love, and this usually happens somewhere between Middle School and the time a person graduates High School.
I fell in like in Middle School; 7th grade. I was in the Library with my best friend, Tammy when I a boy I knew suddenly appeared at my side with a boy I didn’t know. The boy I did know (David) was begging this boy to, “Please, man, don’t. Don’t.” But he did.
As I said, I didn’t know this boy; I had never seen or spoken to him before and (most importantly) it was 1974. He had sun streaked, swoopy Bieber bangs, long before Bieber had even came into existence, beautiful brown eyes and a smile that half angelic innocence and devilish mischief. He worked his way in much too close to me, nodded his head at Dave, turned back to me, flashed his precious, deep dimples and said, “That boy told me that he wants to eat your pussy.”
I was shocked! Tammy was appalled! We both gasped in such horror and disgust that it almost got us thrown out of the Library. I was 12 years old. It was 1974! The word “pussy” was NOT spoken out loud; EVER! If you did have to refer to…down there, you spoke of it only to your closest girlfriends and then you referred to it as…”you know” followed by a discreet nod of the head or as “down there.” I quickly recovered, narrowed my eyes to angry slits, and gave both boys a go to “H-E double toothpicks” look and stormed out of the Library. Once a safe distance down the hall, I turned to Tammy, “That boy is so CUTE” I said. “Do you think he likes me?”
The next day Steve apologized and I found out that he did indeed like me. Soon, he asked me to “go with him.” We were going together, which is like going steady or dating…only without actual dates. We didn’t have actual dates because at 12 and 13 years old, neither one of us could drive a car. It didn’t matter though; that didn’t stop me from being in serious “like.” We talked on the phone for hours…literally 3 and 4 hours at a time. We spent precious moments of tender romance at school, in the gym, sitting by each other in the gym and on the bus; we went to school dances together and of course school football and basketball games.
I LOVED him, but not just because he was sooooo cute. He had a great tan…he wasn’t too tall or short, but the perfect height. He was in the band AND played sax, just like me, so we had that in common. He smelled really good, but most of all; he was bold. Yes, it was nasty and gross what he said to me in the Library. And yes, it really embarrassed me; but the truth was, it excited me as well. I don’t mean it excited me in a sexual way; no, it excited me because in a world of boys afraid to even speak to a girl, Steve had the brazen confidence to be…well, brazen with a girl. He said exactly what he felt and asked for what he wanted with unapologetic abandon.
Steve gave me my first real kiss and I absolutely thought my legs would go out from under me. It literally took my breath away and when it was over all I could think was, “Oh my God…When can I do that again?” He had kisses that did all the work for him. You know? I would say that his kisses could make a girl melt, but I won’t because that so cliche’ and it’s an understatement. He had kisses that made me forget. I forgot where I was. I forgot my name. I forgot how to stand, but even worse; I forgot how to say “no.” Now, for those of you that aren’t over 45 years of age, you have to realize a few things. 1974 was SUCH a different time. As far as teens and anything to do with sex…ANYTHING; it was ultra conservative. It’s really difficult to explain, but I’ll try as simply as I can.
NO. The answer was NO. A girl was conditioned, obligated and taught to say NO, and most of the time, we didn’t even know why. All teen girls knew in 1974 was that it was…just…not what nice girls did, so NO. If that wasn’t enough to get you to keep your panties on there was always that 1 girl that everyone whispered and waited about. We whispered because there was a rumor that she was pregnant. We waited because if she was pregnant, she would most certainly disappear about the time that “you could tell.”
There’s nothing worse than telling someone that you’re really into, no, when you really want to say yes. But I was. I was constantly telling him, “No! Quit! Stop!” He was all hands and I was forever having to fight him off. When he would finally stop trying to feel me up on top of my clothes, it was only because he had, with lightning speed managed to get his hands under my shirt and was attempting to get them under my bra. If I stopped him from doing that, then he simply tried to get his hands into my pants.
Even though I did that thing where you write down you and you’re beloved’s first, middle and last name and them add up all the letters that both names have in common with a point system that tells whether or not your love is “true love,” and even though I diligently practiced writing my name with his last name and even though my mood ring was always blue, the color of love, when he was around; it was bound to happen. We broke up.
Well, there was no actual “we” as far as the breaking up went. There was only “he.” He broke up with me. . You see, the break up really was destined to happen. Steve was a year older than me and a grade higher than me. Our Middle School was 7th and 8th grade only, so at the end of his 8th grade year, Steve moved on up to the High School and left me behind. I didn’t worry about it because he swore to me that he not only loved me but he would always love me and no amount of flirting from any big tittied High School girl would ever, EVER change that. Bullshit.
That breakup was horrible. It was as embarrassing, terrible and awful. I was heartbroken…and I had no dignity about it; that was the worst part I hoped and prayed and prayed some more that we’d get back together, but no; it wasn’t happening. I didn’t stand a chance because he wasn’t at the same school as me. I couldn’t look really cute so that he’d think maybe he’d made a mistake. I couldn’t flirt with other boys or get a new boyfriend and make him crazy jealous. I couldn’t give him hateful looks, pass him notes, run into him in the hall; nothing!
Eventually, I got over it and Steve was just a vague memory. I’ve had a few more break ups since then, but here’s what gets me. That very first break up at 12 years old was just as heartbreaking as break ups I had years later. Once, I had a very upset student come to my room, fighting back tears, desperate to talk to me about a break up that had just happened in 2nd block. As we walked around the outside perimeter of the school, I watched as lazy tears welled in his eyes and slipped down his cheeks. Yes, the tears welled up in his eyes. He was an all-star football player, a rough and rowdy good old boy who could beat the hell out of someone just for fun or just walk away, but at that moment, his sadness and pain was breaking my heart. Because love and/or losing love doesn’t care if you’re male or female, young or old, rich or poor, straight or gay, black, white, Asian, Hispanic, or whatever. No one escapes unscathed. He turned to me and with optimistic hope he asked me; “Will it always hurt this bad?” I couldn’t lie to him, I told him; “Yes. It will always hurt at least this bad. Sometimes, it will hurt even more, but I promise; you’ll be okay.”
It’s funny how some things never change.